I thought I’d sum up the story here, but I don’t really want to spoil anything, so all I can say is: read the whole thing!
Out on the prairie, a farmer is tending to his flock of grazing sheep, when suddenly a brand new BMW pulls up on a nearby road. The man in the car is dressed in an Armani suit, Gucci shoes, Ray Ban sunglasses and an YSL tie. He sticks his head out of the car window and loudly calls to the farmer:
“If I can count how many sheep you’ve got grazing there, would you let me take one of the sheep with me?”
The farmer looks at the man, then at his dispersed flock of sheep, and says:
“Fine by me!”
The man drives up next to the farmer and sets up his Dell Notebook on his car’s hood. The man then uses his iPhone to establish a 4G connection to NASA. He connects to a GPS system, pulls the exact coordinates and relays them to another satellite which subsequently scans the grazing area with a high-definition camera.
Without breaking a sweat he opens the image in Adobe Photoshop and exports it to an image processing facility in Hamburg, Germany. Within a few seconds his iPad receives an email saying “picture processed and data stored”, after which he logs in to an MS-SQL database via ODBC and exports the data to an Excel sheet containing lots of advanced formulas. He then relays his data to Xircom, and within seconds he gets a reply.
The man finishes his technical wizardry by printing a 150 page report using his high-tech HP Color Laser Jet. He casually glances at the documents and says to the farmer:
“Hmm… You’ve got exactly 1586 animals here.”
“That’s right,” says the farmer, “a deal’s a deal – you’re welcome to one of the sheep.”
The farmer looks on as the man walks around deciding on which sheep to pick, after which the man struggles to get the animal into the trunk of his brand new car. The farmer then says:
“Tell you what, if I can guess your profession, would you give me back my sheep?”
The man considers this for a moment, and then agrees.
“You’re a consultant” says the farmer.
“That’s right!” exclaims the man with surprise, “How on Earth did you know?”
“It’s a no-brainer,” says the farmer, “you came here without being asked, you charged me for something that I already knew and you haven’t got the faintest clue about this branch of industry. So be a darling, open the trunk and give me back my dog!